Friday, September 25, 2015


Nope, not the place east of NYC. This is the original Jersey, the one New … is named after. This Jersey is an island in the English Channel, a possession of the English Crown, but self governing. This little place is in the news because its Assembly voted 37-4 to include same-sex couples in its marriage and divorce laws.

And Nepal is getting close. That country's Assembly approved a new constitution that specifically says citizens have the right to choose their preferred gender identity and gender and sexual minorities will not be discriminated against. Marriage is not mentioned and will be worked out in civil laws.

This constitution has been stalled for more than a decade. But the big earthquake in Nepal a few months ago showed how much the new constitution was needed. Recovery was almost impossible without it. Though the four big parties agreed, several smaller parties still oppose it and are mobilizing protests. Their opposition is mostly because they feel they will be underrepresented.

Filmmakers Wylie Overstreet and Alex Gorosh say that traditional models of the solar system are not to scale. The sizes of the planets are way too big for the depicted distances from the sun. So they and some friends went out to the desert to do it right. With the earth the size of a marble and the sun about 1.5 meters they measured out distances and constructed orbits. Which explains the desert – when the earth is the size of a marble the orbit of Uranus is seven miles in diameter. The two videos explaining their fun are a total of 10 minutes.

The case that Jim Obergefell brought against the state of Ohio resulted in the Supremes declaring marriage equality this past June. Obergefell is now requesting the state to pay over $1.1 million in legal fees and expenses.

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